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The Good Read (or, What Makes a Book Good)

By on Thursday, Jul 12, 2012 in Craft, What Makes a Book Good | 0 comments

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I came across the beginning of this spectacular book review by Susanna Sonnenberg of the San Francisco Chronicle. In it she defines what makes a book a good read.

Before you read it, I want you to substitute your name for the author, Karen Thompson Walker, and the title of your book instead of hers, which is The Age of Miracles.

Here it is:

“What do we ask of a good read? Escape, release, characters to believe in, situations that convince us, especially fantastic ones. We must be compelled from one page to the next at a pace that feels just right–not too fast, never slow. Often the good read is cinematic, suggesting the inevitable movie. Karen Thompson Walker has suffused her first novel, The Age of Miracles, with these qualities, and if you begin this book, you’ll be loath to set it down until you’ve reached its end.

What, in turn, does the good read ask of us? Surrender.

I surrendered on page 7.”

Books, Shakespeare and Company Bookstore, The Latin Quarter, Paris

There, now you have it. The perfect review that perfectly sums up (in my opinion) what we, as readers, desire most in a book.

Now we, as writers, simply need to go out and write that!!! Easy-peasy, right???